A's Las Vegas Ballpark

What Manfred thought of ‘reverse boycott' crowd at A's game

NBC Universal, Inc.

On Tuesday, Athletics fans held a historic "reverse boycott" to prove their worth to team owner John Fisher and MLB.

As the A's cleared a significant hurdle when the Nevada Senate voted to approve $380 million in public funding for a Las Vegas ballpark, nearly 28,000 fans packed the Oakland Coliseum to show support for the team they have rooted for all their lives.

While history was taking place on the West Coast, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred didn't watch because he was at a dinner with MLB owners, who will vote to approve or deny the A's relocation from Oakland to Las Vegas.

But like everyone else, Manfred read the headlines and digested all the coverage afterward. On Thursday, the commissioner shared his impression of the turnout.

"It was great," he said (h/t The Athletic's Evan Drellich). "It’s great to see what is, this year, almost an average Major League Baseball crowd in the facility for one night. That’s a great thing."

The game drew roughly 27,759 fans, the largest home crowd of the 2023 season, and more than triple the team's home average of 9,076.

It was more than this season's average attendance of the Miami Marlins, Kansas City Royals, Tampa Bay Rays, Pittsburgh Pirates, Detroit Tigers, Cincinnati Reds, Chicago White Sox, Cleveland Guardians, Baltimore Orioles, Arizona Diamondbacks, Washington Nationals, Minnesota Twins and Seattle Mariners, respectively, per ESPN's 2023 MLB attendance report.

That is 13 MLB teams that A's fans outshined in one game.

This week, both the Nevada Senate and Nevada Assembly approved Senate Bill 1, the franchise's request for $380 million of public funding to squeeze a new ballpark on a nine-acre plot on the Tropicana Las Vegas site.

The bill now heads to Gov. Joe Lombardo's desk where he is expected to sign it into law.

When that happens, which is expected to be soon, the A's must complete a number of additional steps before the move is official. On top of approval from MLB owners, the team must prove they can come up with the remaining $1.1 billion in private financing to fund the rest of the $1.5 billion ballpark project.

Once all that is done, the A's have to find a temporary place to call home while their brand new stadium -- projected to open right in time for the 2028 season -- is being built.

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